Robotic versus Laparoscopic Gastrectomy for Gastric Carcinoma: a Meta-Analysis of Efficacy and Safety


Department of Clinical Medicine, Gansu University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Yinchuan, China


Purpose: To systematically review efficacyand safety of robotic gastrectomy (RG) compared with conventional laparoscopic gastrectomy (LG) for gastric carcinoma. Materials and Methods: A systematic literature search was carried out using PubMed, Cochrane Library, CBM, CNKI, WanFang, VIP and other sources like relevant references to obtain comparative studies assessing the effectiveness and safety between RG and LG published between 2013 and 2016. Then the literature was screened and the data were extracted by 2 independent reviewers. The quality of the literature was assessed, and the data analyzed using Stata/SE 14 software. Fixed effects or random effects models wereapplied according to heterogeneity. Results: A total of 12 non-randomized observational clinical studies involving 3,580 patients were included, of which 1,096 had undergone RG and 2,484 had received LG. The results of the meta-analysis showed in terms of effectiveness, RG was associated with less blood loss, less time to first flatus and greater number of harvested lymph nodes, but there were no significant differences in proximal and distal resection margins, compared with LG. In terms of efficiency, RG was associated with shorter hospital stay, but longer operative time. In terms of safety, there were no statistically significant differences in complications, mortality and conversions between RG and LG. Conclusions: RG can achieve comparable or better short-term and radical effects than LG, with respect to effectiveness, efficiency and safety in treatment of gastric carcinoma. Future studies involving RG should focus on decreasing operative time and reducing cost. Moreover, there is a need for randomized controlled trials comparing the two techniques with long-term follow-up.